One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An elasmobranch fish of a group that comprises the sharks and dogfishes.
The former group Selachii, subclass Elasmobranchii: now treated as one, two, or three superorders
- ‘Those produced by the hypochordal lobe of the caudal fin of selachians and early bony fishes have been studied in detail.’
- ‘Fish included many elasmobranchs as well as osteichthyes such as palaeoniscoids, dipnoi, selachians, and crossopterygians, together with the ancient acanthodians.’
- ‘Lack of neural spine is consistent with selachians (a group of vertebrates which includes sharks and rays).’
Relating to the selachians.
- ‘The A. alatus specimens were collected from tuffaceous fine-grained sandstones that overlay the very fossiliferous yellowish tuffs containing abundant remains of bivalves, echinoids, whale vertebrae, and selachian teeth.’
Mid 19th century: from modern Latin Selachii (from Greek selakhos ‘shark’) + -an.
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